updated 04:40 pm EST, Mon January 17, 2011
Tiny fraction continue to use iOS 2.x
Around 90 percent of iOS handheld owners are using iOS 4.0 or better, a pair of developers say. Bump is offering the most precise statistics, noting that 89.73 percent of its iOS base is on v4.x, whereas 10.25 percent is using v3.x. A sliver, 0.02 percent, is still on v2.x. The OS dates back to the iPhone 3G, and was the very first version of the platform to support apps. Because the statistics are app-based, it's unknown how many people may still be on iOS 1.x.
Bump's sample pool consists of about 25 million downloads spread between iOS and Android. The company's data is backed by an engineer at Loopt, who says that the latter's figures are similar but show "even a little more" people on v4.x. The numbers compare extremely favorably against Android smartphones and tablets, of which only about 0.4 percent are believed to be on the latest OS release.
The gap may shrink somewhat however when the final version of iOS 4.3 ships. The developer beta currently omits support for the iPhone 3G and the second-generation iPod touch, meaning that iOS 4.2.1 may be the last compatible update supported by either device. Such exclusion is likely to carry over to iOS 5, which will probably be revealed sometime this spring.